I’ve been keeping an eye out in all of the usual suspect sites.. eBay, Gumtree, etc, for cheap bikes to buy purely to work on to practise bike mechanics.
There are a few decent bulk sellers out there, and obviously plenty of bikes for sale in general, but many of these need a car or even van.. and I have neither, choosing to ride my motorbike as my primary mode of transport.
So I arranged to borrow my other half’s car today and go to buy a locally available bike, which was up for £20. It was advertised with a seized seat post, which sounded a challenge!
The bike also had the bonus of looking like it would be a good fit for my girlfriend, in case she wanted to try out bike riding.
Having got the bike, which is a Raleigh Wildcat, home, I’m actually really pleased with it – there are parts with surface rust to clean up, new grease needed, panniers to remove, and a new chain required, of a shorter length.. the current one rubs the guide pulley of the rear mech in the small / small combo.
I have never experienced such amazing v-brakes – the brake arms are so solid, and there’s barely any flex in the levers.. most impressed.
First step was to diagnose the seatpost, and I discovered that although there is possibly some galvanic corrosion bonding the post and tube, the primary issue is that the heads of the Allen bolt heads are stripped. So I’ve now ordered a set of mole grips which will hopefully assist with extraction.
While I wait for those to arrive, I’ll be looking for some apple cider vinegar to use for removing the rust from the bolts and other corroded components, and measuring up the afore-mentioned bolt for ordering a new one. Stay tuned!